NSW floods: Child missing after car swept away in central west near Parkes

A five-year-old child has been missing since Friday night after being swept away by floodwaters in central west NSW during the third flood event this year.

NSW State Emergency Services, paramedics, and police crews were called to McGrane Way at Tullamore about 10pm, following reports two vehicles had become trapped in flood waters.

When they arrived at the scene northwest of Parkes, emergency services found four people clinging to trees to escape the rising flood waters.

They were rescued by crews on an SES flood boat and treated by paramedics at the scene.

“Police have been told that a five-year-old child from one of the vehicles has not yet been accounted for,” a spokesperson said.

The two cars were travelling along the road near Tullamore on Friday night when they became trapped in the floodwaters, according to police.

A police spokesperson said the vehicles are still submerged in the floodwaters and police will remain on site until they can be retrieved and accessed.

It’s possible the five-year-old child is still inside one of the vehicles.

After being assessed at the scene, the four people rescued from the trees have been taken to Dubbo Hospital for treatment.

Roads in the area remain closed due to heavy flooding, which police said has made accessing McGrane Way difficult.

The area has been subjected to very heavy rainfall in the past 24 hours, with some areas being drenched with a quarter of their annual rainfall average in a single night.

There are 19 flood warnings currently in place across NSW and the SES confirmed it performed five flood rescues on Friday night.

An SES spokesperson said the majority of the rescues were people over-estimating their ability to drive through flooded areas.

“It’s people still thinking that they know which way they can go through flooded roads,” they said.

“There’s no safe way to drive through floodwaters.”

The SES is urging people to realise the roads they may normally drive may be flooded and impassable, and cautions travellers to pack extra food and water in case of delays.

People who need to travel should check livetraffic.com for up-to-date information on the condition of the roads.

“We’re asking the community to make smart and sensible decisions, especially during the school holidays,” the SES spokesperson said.

“Be prepared and adapt to any conditions you may come across.”

The SES is continuing to monitor flood conditions as the heavy rainfall eases from the northern part of the state but continues in other areas.

As always, the rescue organisation warns people to remember the old adage “if it’s flooded, forget it.”

Originally published as Child, 5, missing after car swept away in central west floodwaters

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